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Big Worst - Mikkeller ApS

Not Rated.
Big WorstBig Worst

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

110 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 110
Reviews: 55
rAvg: 3.73
pDev: 16.35%
Wants: 21
Gots: 26 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website
Denmark

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  18.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brownbeer on 03-16-2010

First Batch: 17.6% ABV January 2010
Second Batch: 18.5% ABV March 2011

Brewed at De Proefbrouwerij.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 110 | Reviews: 55 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Ghenna
3.9/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a NB chalice. Wet straw clolor, white head, low retention.

Smells sweet, fruity, and boozy.

My first notion when I drink this is that it is a port- a lighter colored citrus port. It actually reminds me a lot of a late harvest reisling.

It's hard to think of something to say about this one. Despite being nearly 19% it is (relatively) drinkable. It tastes nice and has a less thick mouthfeel than a North Coast Old Stock. Its flavor profile though kind of puts it outside of the realm of beer- it is just too heavy and lacks the nuance that I get with beer. The flavors that it has, are just too strong and cover up the other parts that I expect to find in a beer.

I'm glad that I snagged this when I saw it- it is hard to make a beer at this ABV, I might even snag another to age for 10 years, but there are quite a few beers that I would get before this one again.

Photo of Rutager
3.89/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A big thank you to Gothgargoyle for this! Holdbar til 22/03/20

Appearance. Pours a murky orange-brown with a thin khaki head that fades to a lasting collar.

Smell. Nice caramel and oak barrel with a little old barrel funk. There's a little citrus and orchard frutiness going on as well. Nice.

Taste. Wow. Citrus rinds and caramel, coconut and toasted oak, some sharp alcohol, oily bitter hops that last on the tongue. Interesting with big flavours going on.

Mouthfeel. Fairly full bodied, low carbonation.

Overall. Sweet, boozy, hoppy, tons of barrel. It's an assault on the palate but nothing really outputting about it. Always fun to try something different.

Photo of glid02
3.88/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from a friend.

Pours an opaque, very dark copper color with a surprising one-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of sticky caramel malts with good amounts of citrus and lighter amounts of pine hops. As the beer warms the hops fade a bit and the malt aromas sweeten.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Deep caramel malt flavors that are certainly sweeter because of the high ABV kick things off. Light toffee and mild grapefruit and pine hop flavors come in midway through the sip and carry through to an ending that's equally bitter and sweet. There's a good deal of warming influence after the sip but the ABV is still very well hidden.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a smooth thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall I was impressed with the surprisingly large hop influence on such a big beer as well as the tempered alcohol influence. It's tough to make a beer with this high of an ABV drinkable and Mikkel did a nice job - worth a shot.

Photo of dbossman
3.88/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Gold and clear with just a touch of head; lacing is surprisingly good

S: So boozy; so much alcohol with a touch of butter; lots of grains but God, this beer is boozy

T: So much booze--even a bit of smokey scotch flavors; this is grainy and it burns--wow, does it burn; boozy, buttery, grainy, and awesome

F: Decently carbonated; fairly creamy

O: Holy crap, this is a big, boozy beer, and I love it; I'm not sure what style this actually is but I love this boozy, grainy glass of awesomeness

Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.85/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a DFH snifter. Cork made a low pop leading me to believe there will be little head.

A - Very surprised that this muddy colored beer indeed those have a nice .5 inch head that is off white and recedes at a moderate pace ad goes down to a nice thin film with a ring around the glass.

S - Interesting vinous notes and some aroma that I cant quite place almost flowery. Sweet notes and some mild grain with mild hint of hops.

T - Very sweet and interesting vinous flavors. Strong alcoholic esters that bring warmth to the beer. Definitely a sipper. There is some very very sweet fruit notes that are very dominating throughout the tongue. Grapes, pears, mild dates, and some cinnamon are all perceived. Hops explode out of the taste more so than the nose especially in the pine category. Very oily hop flavor but not too much bitterness. Good offering.

M & D - Smooth nice CO2 balance and flavors a plenty. Drinkability is low because of intensity of flavor and ABV.

Photo of lowendfrequency
3.84/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12.7 fl oz poured into an extra fat snifter.

Pours shockingly light colored, crystal clear amber with a copper hue. Definitely one of the lightest hued beers of this potency I've ever sampled. Not much of a head to write about but enough to form trace bubbles on the rim of the glass.

Long before I bring the glass to my nose I can detect a heavy banana aroma permeating the room. Upon closer scrutiny, this beer puts off a ton of acetone which, at 18.5%, is to be expected. Behind the big nose are more subtle notes of thick honey, burnt sugars and tree sap.

The flavor is floral and resinous like a high quality honey. I get a strong dose of white grapes, pineapple and something akin to a nice gold rum. Mouthfeel is like a thick syrup initially but the high alcohol helps dry things up to keep this from being too cloying. There is a distinct booze character holding up the finish to remind you of the potent brew in your glass. VERY mead-like.

This was a good beer. That being said, it's not ready to drink. For what I paid, I don't feel the experience it provided was worth the cost. However, this beer has major cellar potential. I'm tempted to go out and by a few bottles to lay down for a year or more. Another eye opener from Mikkeller.

Photo of Luvzsurfrz
3.83/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

375mL bottle poured into snifter on 5/15/11.

A: Pours an opaque, deep amber in color with a very shallow head. Lots of bubbles remain in the bottom of the snifter.

S: Smells primarily like a malty caramel with a light sweet citrus aroma. Also, smell faint boozy notes present in the caramel sweetness.

T: The first thing I notice is the sweet, sticky caramel flavor with warm boozy undertones. Notes of banana and citrus are also present. You can feel the heavier abv after a few sips, but still very drinkable.

M: Lightly syrupy, yet smooth. Citrus flavor is more notable the more you drink.

O: Surprisingly impressed with the comfortable balance of flavor on such a high abv. The alcohol mellows the longer it sits. Definitely another Mikkeller success!

Photo of Scotchboy
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ Brewforia Beer Market, Bound Crossing ID. 4oz poured into what looks like a brandy snifter.

A: Fairly clear, light orange colored body, hardly any white head (expected) but what is there settles into an attractive ring. As one would expect the alcohol legs are off the chart.

S: Honestly, quite pleasant for a beer this big. Sweet and sugary for sure; apples, caramel malt, candy sugar, perfume, sweet flowers, and the booze, although it's all relatively complimentary and the alcohol isn't overwhelming.

T: Sweet alcohol, toffee, flowery perfume (not herbal), honey...pretty hot alcohol-wise but not overwhelming.

MF: Fairly thin but viscous body. Quite drying. It's not hard to drink per-se but I don't need more than four ounces.

O: Qute nice for an extreme beer. My first Mikkeller, and it didn't disappoint. Reminds me a LOT of two year old 120 Minute IPA.

Photo of wordemupg
3.78/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

375ml corked and caged bottle poured into chalice june10 2010

A fairly clear orange amber with lots of bubbles of all sizes and speeds. a fingers worth of head hung around for longer then expected and even left a couple patch's of lace, more then I expected from such a big beer

S a little green apple with some caramel and booze

T all I smell but some hops come out with a heavy amount of candied fruit and booze almost like a caramel apple dipped in brandy, fairly sweet but nothing insane. Although this is still a little hot for 17.6% it's a reasonable and has more flavors then I could smell

M a little syrupy and sticky and not as thick as I expected but not thin by any means, some of the visible carbonation isn't there but not flat either, my big complaint would but the heat from the booze but again its too be expected at this ABV

D you would be wise drinking only one of these or finding a friend to share with, that being said I finished it without major issues and its worth trying with no doubt

I liked this beer but it needs several years to mellow out, I could see this getting a much higher review after some cellar time. I will drink this again it just won't be for a few years, one of the biggest beers I've ever had and the strongest I can think of on the shelves in Alberta.

Photo of BeerImmediately
3.77/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

375ml into tulip at about 50 degrees.

Pours w/short white head over a very clear peach-to-golden body, with a fair amount of carbonation struggling to make it up.

Aromas are laced with alchohol, sweet candy sugar, ripe banana, yeast, and bubble gum.

Flavor shifts gears slightly, in that the alcohol is masked by the thick sweetness of ripe banana, navel orange-like citrus, caramel, and a kiss of grapefruit rhind.

Mouthfeel is obviously thick and cordial-like, causing it to be nothing but a sipper.

I enjoy sweet beers, so had no problem with this one overall ... except that it's "out there" relative to most Barleywines.

p.s. Do not shotgun this beer.

Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of ddedhed
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of HopsMatt
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of spycow
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of Vegasbeer
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of Jason1337
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of ajs4bd
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of biboergosum
3.72/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

375ml bottle, best before 07/12/19, but who the hell can wait that long? I'm already tired of looking at this in my beer storage area after a whole 6 months...

This beer pours an opaque, over-saturated iced-tea amber-brown hue, with a thin cap of fizzy off-white head, which, in the way of things fizzy, fizzes out quickly, leaving nothing much beyond a few lame specks of lace. It smells heavy, the weight pulling my nostrils down as if gravity had suddenly doubled - big brown sugar malt, orange liqueur, leafy, oily, somehow fresh hops, and softly astringent booze. The taste is unctuous toffee, butterscotch, and treacle, all dressed up in nice bouquets of pine and citrus, and doused in warming alcohol. The carbonation is quite languid, the body mind-numbing in its duality - sweet sugary, hedonistic smoothness vs. dry, ascetic alcohol. It finishes in the exact sense of the word - I feel 'end of lifed' by this behemoth - the stewed citrus hops coming out of temporary retirement to take on the pushy malt overlord, is well, a nice final touch.

Holy tap-dancing Jebus, I did not expect this - a relatively easy-drinkin', yet still in your face offering. While the ABV level surpasses any and all big-ass wines that I've come across, somehow the heat perception falls short of any of that. This ain't right - nothing this strong should taste so, so, so temperate, and complex.

Photo of AgentMunky
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 375mL bottle into a Koningshoevn chalice. Batch #1 (January 2012) brewed at 17.6%.

A: No head. Mud brown and not very pretty. Opaque.

S: Flat (dead) yeast. Caramel malt. Alcohol. Brown sugar. Like an old Old Ale.

T/M: Mmm. Big, sweet, and smooth. Apples and brown sugar; like a brandy or spiced cider. No carbonation whatsoever. The aftertaste is lingering and almost sticky-sweet. Almost (but not quite) oppressive.

O: The numbers in this review don't do the overall beer justice, but it's actually really nice, if quite sweet. Recommended. Drinkable. Tasty. Impressively large.

Photo of Dope
3.69/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I assume this is batch 1, 17.6% ABV. Dated 07/12/19, I assume "best by".

A: Pours a murky, rusty brown. No head other than a handful of bubbles as it is poured, which quickly disappear. No lacing of course.

S: Sickly sweet with a freight train of caramel. Some toffee with lots of dark fruit, raisin stands out the most by far. Hints of molasses. Very strong and sharp and extremely boozy.

T: Fruity up front with the raisin and perhaps fig and grape. Loads and loads of caramel, burnt sugars and toffee. Ends mainly with toffee lingering into a long lasting boozy aftertaste.

M: Thick doesn't cut it. Very heavy and with no carbonation; it's like drinking syrup. Tough to drink, can barely sip it.

O: What a strange brew. There's nothing "wrong" with it, it's basically a huge yet simple barleywine. Super boozy, alcohol is not hidden at all. No carbonation too - makes it very tough to drink though, a sipper for sure. Maybe cellar this one for a few decades and see how it comes out. I think it has potential.

Photo of Mora2000
3.68/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle. Sampled alongside the Bourbon edition.

This beer was dramatically different as it warmed. I am including the warmer review first, which is what I am rating. The other review will follow.

The beer pours a very clear yellow color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the vanilla and almonds with some apricot and orange notes. The flavor is more of the same, with a lot of orange and apricots. There are also some flora hops and some alcohol in the flavor. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation.

Now, for the review when the beer was cold.

The aroma is full of nail polish remover and some strong sake notes. The flavor is that of a sake, with some almond and strong alcohol notes. There is also a little bit of toffee mixed in.

The moral of this story is let this beer warm to near room temperature before you drink it.

Photo of gford217
3.6/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours an opaque caramel brown with a surprisingly big beige head that recedes slowly, leaving streaks of lacing and legs after each swirl.

The aroma has more hops than I was expecting with a biting citrus zing and plenty of underlying caramel malts and the alcohol, though it's less obtrusive than some of the big Mikkeller brews. Maybe even some caramelized apples as well.

The taste is hefty with more alcohol burn than the aroma suggests. The citrus hops are there but give way to the massive sugary sweetness of the malt backbone. The finish has a serious alcohol burn and a scathing bitterness, both of which limit the drinkability.

The mouthfeel is sticky and thick, almost syrupy but with a ton of alcohol.

This is a massively sweet and boozy barleywine that is definitely not the most drinkable I've had in the style. Abrasive but tasty stuff.

Photo of Halcyondays
3.6/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12.7 oz. bottle,

A: On the contrary to the lack of a pop upon uncorking the bottle the beer pours with a solid amount of fizz for a beer of this type. Pours a murky dark red, mild white head, very good retention, no lace.

S: Lots of booze, sugary crystal malt, sweet stone fruit, some apricot and cherry, smells like a strong barleywine for sure.

T: Sugar city, definitely more in the English style, definite toffee. The booze is heavy, but never overbearing, a hint of hops. Nice flavour, but nothing to really interest me.

M: Full-bodied, boozy, pretty smooth, nice easy finish.

D: A beer that has good flavours now, but is a bit hot. Give it a few years, and it might be amazing, the base is there.

Photo of minterro
3.59/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From notes at Crunchy’s in East Lansing.

A & S: White grapes and alcohol sweetness in the scent. Mainly dominated by booziness. Clear yellow-orange. Clear head was there in wisps when received but went away relatively quick to nothing but specks and a ring, no lacing except when swilled which resulted in wine like legs.

T & M: Not much hops as advertised in the description. fruity pretty high carbonation, crisp. Very sweet alcohol aftertaste. Fairly Thin bodied. When warmed a little sweeter and easier to drink. Alcohol isn’t well hidden in either the taste or the nose.

O: Trying to be unbiased because Barley wines are not normally my forte, but I don’t really like this beer all that much. Not upset that I tried it cause it was the highest ABV beer I’ve ever rated, but I wouldn’t get it again.

Big Worst from Mikkeller ApS
84 out of 100 based on 110 ratings.